Headline News

A Fresh Look at Flower Shows

National Garden Clubs (NGC) has developed a new program to promote NGC Flower Shows. The program involves the Kentucky Judges Council to encourage and mentor clubs wishing to hold a flower show by providing information and support on schedule writing, awards, and procedures and then to guide the club through the flower show process. This program is designed for garden clubs that have never held an NGC Flower Show or garden clubs that have not held a flower show in the last five years.

To get your club started on the path to a fun and successful Flower Show, please contact the Judges Council President, Mary W. Turner (mary.turner@tetratech.com | 859-361-0799). A Mentor Judge will be assigned to your club and will provide you with a packet of information about staging an NGC Flower Show, including a sample Flower Show Schedule, a list of NGC Awards, and a list of the necessary supplies that can be ordered from NGC. With assistance from your Mentor Judge, your club will tailor the information to fit your needs and preferences and will work with you throughout the process—from beginning to end. Clubs that participate will be recognized with a certificate signed by the NGC President, Mary Warshauer.

Worthy Programs Photo Archiving

The photo archiving of your club’s accomplishments celebrates the projects, events, and activities of the members of National Garden Clubs, Inc. Your club’s photographs will be posted on our website and shared across other platforms such as our Facebook page. You can share your garden club pictures with other garden clubbers and the world!

Examples of pictures for posting:

    • Blue Star Memorial plantings and dedications
    • Flower show staging
    • Wildflower plantings
    • Civic beautification projects
    • Aquatic eco-systems projects
    • Youth Gardening Projects
    • Arbor Day plantings
    • Award Ceremonies
    • School Garden Projects
    • Plant it Pink projects
    • Anything else you want to brag about!

Be sure to identify your club, district, and the location of your photo.

Send pictures to GCKY’s Photo Archiving Chair Mary W. Turner (mary.turner@tetratech.com). You may also reach Mary at 859-361-0799 if you have any questions or need additional information.

Happy 50th Anniversary, Arboretum!

“In the Arboretum”

This year marks the 50th anniversary of Nannine Clay Wallis’s bequeathal of her 616 Pleasant Street home to The Garden Club of Kentucky, to be used as its headquarters and to promote gardening. The house is on the National Register of Historic Places, and the garden is a certified arboretum. GCKY is the only state member of National Garden Clubs to have its own headquarters and an arboretum. What a magnificent gift Mrs Wallis gave the Garden Club, Paris, and all who are interested in gardening and learning more about gardening.

Mrs. Wallis had three loves: gardening, her husband Frederick, and children. She was always generous with her 3.6 acre garden, and she hosted many school, church and other groups to visit and even picnic.

The Garden Club of Kentucky has continued to make the Nannine Clay Wallis Arboretum available for groups. On Monday, July 12, more than 100 children will participate in the annual Kids Day at the Arboretum.

Another custom that GCKY has continued is the planting of the latest introductions of plants with each marked as to name, date and if planted in honor or memory of a person or group. Some are collections of a plant, such as the Hosta, Crabapple, and Daylily. Others are grouped in specific gardens including Rain, Butterfly, Monarch, and Herb gardens. The Arboretum plants have outdone themselves this year, as if they know they are a part of the 50th-year celebration.

Among the spectacular trees is the Tricolor Europian Beech (Fagus sylvatica), whose striking purple foliage with creamy pink and rose margins make it a stand-out. It greets visitors (no admission fee) just left of the 7th Street side of the entrance. Equally stunning is The Rising Sun redbud (Cercis canadensis) located to the right of the rectangular pond. Its new foliage is apricot that turns yellow and yellow-green as it matures. Among the trees from the 1900s is a row of ginkgo that separates the Gazebo from the original cutting and vegetable gardens. They are now the site of the Crabapple, President’s (former GCKY presidents’ favorite plants) and Daylily gardens that includes varieties hybridized by Martha Porter, a former GCKY president.

Come visit our wonderful gift from Mrs. Wallis. It is open to all during daylight hours and is available for special events – GCKY club meetings, family picnics, weddings, etc. Contact: 859-987-6158 and leave a message.

Let’s Grow

I am so excited that you have given me the opportunity to serve The Garden Club of Kentucky as president. Thank you for this honor. And thank you for the countless hours you have worked in your community to advance our mission. Garden club members are good stewards of the land, and we encourage others to do the same. Our members not only ‘talk the talk’ but ‘walk the walk’.

The continued theme ‘Let’s Grow’ keeps us focused on just that. We need to grow in membership, clubs, all aspects of gardening, wildlife havens, youth collaboration, education through our four NGC schools, flower shows, conservation efforts, Blue and Gold Star Memorials, and making friends all the while.

We also need to grow in promotion of our accomplishments. Success breeds success. By showcasing our monthly meetings and projects of all types and sizes and by volunteering to speak at other organizations, we let the community know who we are and what we do. One of our goals as a local federated garden club is to never have someone remark ‘I don’t know if we have a garden club or not’ or ask the question ‘Is there a garden club here?’ It should be evident there is an active garden club. By ‘talking the talk’, members let friends and acquaintances know and possibly gain new members. By ‘walking the walk’, the community sees club members working on community projects whether great or small. They will know we are here!

Again, I want to continue with special projects ‘Gardening with Native Plants’ and ‘Habitats for our Wildlife’. These projects are intertwined. One project will result in the other. Because of urban development, ecosystems are being disrupted. We must be even more diligent of what open space we have, allowing for ecosystems to thrive. All life on earth is integrated, all has its purpose, and all must be protected. This is where garden club members come in…we can be those ambassadors in our communities who encourage our Mission Statement of The Garden Club of Kentucky: To provide education, resources and networking opportunities for its members and promote the love of gardening, floral design, civic and environmental responsibility.

Our incoming National Garden Clubs President is Mary Warshauer, whose theme is PLANT AMERICA-PLAY OUTDOORS, and our incoming South Atlantic Region Director is Marty Bowers. Her theme is Reconnect, Plant, Grow, and Bloom.

‘Let’s Grow’!

Carcille Carloftis Burchette

GCKY President (2021-2023)


Interested in Environmental School?  

Members interested in Environmental Schools can go to the National Garden Club (NCG) website (gardenclub.org) to identify the next school available & the location. 

Click on “NGC Schools”, then “Find a Course”, and then just follow the prompts.  Currently, Course 4 will be available Sep 22-23, 2021, via Zoom.  Follow the prompts for details & requirements.  

Unfortunately, the Course 1 that GCKY had scheduled for April 2020 that was cancelled due to Covid 19 will not be re-scheduled within the immediate future. 

The mission of the Environmental School is to teach environmental literacy to cherish, protect & conserve the living earth.  We need to keep a habit of life-long learning.  These schools are an excellent way to do that. 


Linda Craiger 

Chairman, Environmental School 

Carey Hester Huddleston


Carey Hester Huddleston

Sat 18 Feb 1922 – Mon 17 May 2021

Garden Club Member

  Cumberland Park Garden Club She was State President from 1989-1991. 

Mountain Laurel District



Carey Francis Hester Huddleston passed away May 17, 2021 at Middlesboro Nursing and Rehabilitation Facility. She was born February 18, 1922 in Dyersburg, Tennessee to Carey Kitty Farris Hester and William D. Hester, was raised by her aunt, Mrs. Dollie Farris Williams. Mrs. Williams raised Carey and her older brother, Jack after their mother’s demise on the day of Carey’s birth. Carey graduated from Dyersburg Public High School in 1940. She attended Memphis State College for two years before graduating from Tennessee’s Union College in 1944 with a degree in Library Science where she worked for several years as an assistant librarian. Carey received her graduate degree from Peabody in 1945.

On June 26, 1949 in Dyersburg, TN, Carey married the late Charles D. Huddleston, formerly of Middlesboro. They had one child, Charles Vernon Huddleston. During the following years, Carey served as a teacher and librarian in various states before retiring in 1976. Upon Carey and Charlie’s move to Middlesboro in 1976, Carey began an active role in the Cumberland Garden Club where she served as chairman and the Garden Club of Kentucky. She served as President of the latter from 1989 to 1991. Carey’s theme for her Presidency was “Striving Together for Beauty’s Sake”. Carey won numerous ribbons for her flower arrangements at the regional, state and national levels. Carey was also an active bridge player, often hosting bridge parties at her home. Carey served as an Elder of the First Presbyterian Church until just two years ago. She was appointed a Kentucky Colonel by Governor John Y Brown in 1983.

Carey is survived by her son, Major Charles V. (Connie) Huddleston, U.S. Army retired; her granddaughter, Amy C. (Mark) Huddleston Davis and two great grandsons: Ethan Harrison Davis and Ian Kenneth Davis, all of Georgetown, Texas.

Funeral service will be 2 p.m., Thursday, May 20, 2021 at Shumate Funeral Home Chapel. Graveside service will follow in Middlesboro Cemetery. The family will receive friends 1-2 p.m., Thursday, May 20, 2021 at Shumate Funeral Home Chapel.

Shumate Funeral Home is honored to serve the Family of Carey Francis Hester Huddleston and is entrusted with all arrangements.


In the Garden – April

  • Ticks have arrived and are waiting to drop from shrubs and trees onto you. Thoroughly treat clothing with tick spray. Wear light-colored long pants and long sleeve shirt, and hat. Tuck pants into socks, and gloves over sleeve cuffs. Check clothing before entering the house after working in the yard.
  • Daffodils – Daffodils are rapidly fading. Snap off spent blooms at the base of the stem. Allow foliage to die back 2/3rds before cutting it or tucking under other plants. Never fold or braid the foliage as that restricts nutrients to the bulbs to form buds for next year. Plant daylilies in front of daffodils to hide the dying foliage. To divide, wait until mid-June to mid-August.
  • Houseplants – House plants make a house attractive and comfortable. Too often pets are attracted to them and can be toxic. The following  are pet friendly, easy to grow and inexpensive: African violet, Boston fern, banana, gloxinia, and phalaenopsis. Air plant and spider also purify the air.  WARNING: Easter Lilies are poisonous to cats.
  • Trees and shrubs – Wait to cut back bush honeysuckle and early blooming spirea until after they cease blooming. They set their buds for next year on this year’s growth. (Please note that tartarian honeysuckle, Morrow’s honeysuckle, and amur honeysuckle are all invasive in Kentucky and should be removed completely.Tulip magnolia sets its buds by July. For thick hedges top to bottom, prune at an outward angle creating a slightly wider base to allow sun to reach the bottom branches. Before trees leaf out, check for hanging broken limbs and remove.

Easter Lilies

If you receive a lily for Easter, you know that lilies as with any true bulb are easy to care for in the house, and then planted out after the last frost. In the meantime enjoy their elegance inside.  (WARNING: This plant is poisonous to cats!)  Part of its charm is that its pure white petals reflect even the lowest of light whether indoors or in the garden.

A true lily, with a little care Lilium longiflorum will rebloom in mid-summer, having acclimated to its natural bloom period. Until planting out, keep it in bright, indirect light, 60-65 degrees, mist frequently to keep humidity high, and turn the plant every few days. When the flower dies, cut the stem to the base. Plant on a south-facing slope as it likes moist but not wet feet. Plant 6” deep in loamy soil. Clay can be amended by working peat and perlite. Do not worry about the exact depth, the bulb will adjust to its preferred depth.

Parlor Palms

Mrs. Wallis was known for her horticulture and gardens. There is a wonderful picture of her standing most elegantly at the entrance to her formal garden, in front of a long row of tall white lilies. While there is no picture of her standing in front of a cluster of Parlor Palms, there is no doubt that she would have had at least one or two as they were very popular and still are.

Chamaedorea elegans, more commonly known as Parlor Palm, happens to be the most popular house plant world-wide. It requires minimal care, almost to the point of neglect. In addition to adding interest and even elegance to any room and is not toxic to pets or children. What more could you ask for.

A favorite since Victorian days, the Mexican native is a slow-grower it is happy with the average home environment and temperature of 65-75 and even up to 85 degrees. Any light is acceptable except direct. Let the soil dry out before watering every 1-2 weeks and mist a couple of times a week to keep fronds dust-free and mite free. Frond tips will brown if it gets too dry or humidity is low. It will yellow when over-watered.

Primarily a houseplant, the palm is content to spend the summer under a tree and return before the first fall frost. And it has air-purifying attributes.

In Memoriam: Sandra Robinson

It is with a heavy heart that we must inform you that former National Garden Clubs President, Sandra H. Robinson passed away on March 22, 2021.

Sandy Robinson was one of our very own, a founding member of the Lady’s Slipper Garden Club in London, KY, in the Mountain Laurel District. She was a former GCKY President, active at the state, regional, and national levels. Sandy was a four-star member, which means she was a Landscape, Gardening, and Environmental Consultant, and an Accredited Flower Show Judge.

Sandy served as President of National Garden Clubs, Inc. from 2015-2017 with a theme of “Leap Into Action”. Sandy may have been small in stature but had a heart as big as the outdoors. She was quick to share a smile from ear to ear and a story. She lived and loved the garden clubs, and never met a garden club member she did not like or miss an opportunity to promote NGC to anyone, anywhere, and at any time. She was the best traveling companion throughout the United States and abroad. Sandy held a special place in her heart for the IAs and never could believe the lavish attention and admiration they showered on her.

She truly did “Leap into Action” before, during and after her administration. Give her a job, ask her to enter a flower, or travel less than 24 hours after returning from an International WAFA show to judge a flower show, hoping she could get someone else to drive so she could catnap, but look totally refreshed and engaging when arriving at her destination. Sandy was game for any experience, as long as it didn’t involve chicken or shellfish. She was a mentor to many people, helping solve problems of all sorts. Truly, she was a “rock” to her friends and family, someone you could always count on.

She was a longtime and dedicated member of NGC and many lives have been enriched by her friendship. Please keep her and her family in your thoughts and prayers.
Her obituary can be viewed on the Bowling Funeral Home, London, KY, website and Facebook page. Visitation is at 5PM on Friday, March 26, and service at 11AM on Saturday, March 27. It will be livestreamed and archived for later viewing as well.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donations.

att: Jan Worth
2305 Shannon Road
Paris, KY 40361-2451
Memo line: Sandy Robinson

Online: supportbaptisthealth.org/corbin
Designate Oncology Dept.
Check: Baptist Health Foundation Corbin
1 Trillium Way
Corbin, KY 40701
Memo Line: Oncology Dept.